CONNECTIVE BUSINESS SOLUTIONS - providing high quality, low cost, tailored HR solutions to help you PROTECT and ENHANCE your business.
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In our latest quarterly HR newsletter we focus on the latest legislation changes including increases to Statutory payments (including Minimum and Living Wage rates), Gender Pay Gap reporting, Employing Foreign Workers, and the governments new Tax Free Childcare scheme.  We also look at Combatting Stress in the Workplace.

From basic Contracts of Employment to a fully Outsourced HR service we can help.  If you would like to know more about any of our support, consultancy, and training services, and see how we can help you, please visit our website or contact us at to arrange a Free no-obligation consultation.

To get the latest case law updates follow us on Twitter (@connectiveMAC).

April 2017 HR Newsletter

In This Issue:

  • Legislation Updates
  • Training
  • Partner Information
  • Combatting Stress in the Workplace

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Legislation Update

Statutory Payment Changes
With effect from the beginning of the new tax year in April 2017, the harmonised rate for Statutory Maternity Pay, Statutory Paternity Pay, Statutory Shared Parental Pay and Statutory Adoption Pay will be increased by £1.40 per week, to £140.98 per week. These rates will be reduced to 90% of an employee’s earnings if this is lower than the statutory rate.  In addition, the rate of Statutory Sick Pay, which has also been the same since April 2015, will be increased from the beginning of April from £88.45 per week to £89.35 per week.  To be entitled to these statutory payments, your employee’s average earnings must be equal to or more than the lower earnings limit. The weekly lower earnings limit is increasing at the same time from £112 to £113 per week.  The maximum Statutory Redundancy pay is also increasing from £479 to £489 per week.
National Minimum Wage Rate also increase from 1st Aril 2017 as detailed below:
·         £7.50 per hour – 25 years old and over (also known as the ‘living wage’)
·         £7.05 per hour – 21-24 years old
·         £5.60 per hour – 18-20 years old
·         £4.05 per hour – 16-17 years old
·         £3.50 for apprentices under 19 or 19 or over who are in the first year of apprenticeship.
Gender pay gap reporting

The Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017 are set to come into effect on April 6th this year, which will require companies to publish information about what they are paying their male and female staff. This information will be shown on both the business' website as well as a government site.  Firms employing more than 250 people will have to calculate the mean and median hourly rates of pay for both male and female employees, and publish the difference between the two genders. They will also have to do the same for bonuses. The idea behind this is to encourage businesses not to discriminate based on gender, which might affect the salaries you offer new starters.
Employing foreign workers

There are a few changes coming in 2017 for employers looking to take on someone from overseas. First of all, anyone who currently has a foreign worker with a tier two visa on their payroll will need to pay an extra £1,000 per worker, or £364 if you are a small business or a charity, as an "immigration skills charge".  In addition, any new foreign workers looking to apply for a tier two visa will need to be earning a minimum of £30,000 per annum in order to be eligible. Both of these changes will come into effect from April 2017.
Tax Free Childcare
The new system is being introduced on 28 April, with a gradual roll out of the scheme starting with parents of the youngest children.  Eligible families will be able to open an online tax-free account and for every 80p paid in, the government will “top up” an extra 20p up to £2,000 per child per year (or £4,000 per year for disabled children).  The scheme will be available for children under the age of 12, or under 17 for children with disabilities.  To qualify, both parents will have to be in work and earning at least £50 a week but not more than £100,000 per year.   Unlike the current scheme, any eligible working family will be able to use the Tax-Free Childcare scheme as it isn’t dependent on employers offering it. The new scheme will be available to approximately two million households in the UK, including the self-employed. The scheme will also be available to mums on paid and unpaid statutory maternity and also to those parents on SPL, paternity and adoption leave.  The current employer‑supported childcare vouchers scheme will remain open to new entrants until April 2018 and individuals who wish to use the old system will be able to do so while their employer continues to operate it.


Operational Managers are key to a Company’s success, and how they work with and manage their teams is an essential part of this.  We run a number of training courses covering aspects such as Managing Conflict, Discipline and Grievance, Attendance, Stress, and Performance, that help Managers deal with issues and people correctly to enhance your business.  All of our courses can be tailored to suit your exact needs and delivered at your premises if required.

Our Managing Conflict 1 day course is designed to:

  • Realise the actual risks from physical or verbal abuse by employees and customers, whether face-to-face, or by telephone;
  • Raise Manager’s awareness in order to recognise warning signs of danger;
  • Help managers manage conflict and aggressive incidents, and apply skills in order to prevent incidents from happening in the first place;
  • Give managers the tools to make informed choices to keep themselves and others safe whilst going about their work.

This course supports managers to develop the skills they need to manage conflict when in direct contact with employees and/or customers, or indirectly when managing teams.  Enabling managers to enhance their communication techniques to prevent, defuse and deal with irate and aggressive people they meet and manage in the course of their work.

Booking details, along with a full list of our training courses, can be found on our website.


We have established key partnerships to enable us to provide a number of linked expert services to our clients, including:
  • Occupational Health services;
  • HR Software.
  • Health Insurance and Staff Healthcare Benefits;
We also have a number of Associate Partners whose services we have used ourselves and also recommend, covering Legal, Insurance, IT, Telephony and more.  Visit our website to see full information on our partners and services.
Helpful Hints and Tips

Combatting Stress in the Workplace

Stress is a condition that affects many people, yet is one that is still neglected by a number of businesses. In our experience, part of the problem is that there are people who use stress as an excuse when they are not actually stressed. This can lead to a cynical view in a business where genuine cases of stress are not dealt with as they should be. Dealing with stress correctly and effectively not only keeps staff healthy and happy, it also has a positive effect on the bottom line.

Click here to read the full article.

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Navigation Park
Rhondda Cynon Taff
CF45 4SN
United Kingdom

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Connective Business Solutions · Venture House · Navigation Park · Abercynon, RCT CF45 4SN · United Kingdom

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